A recent example I delivered, helps to bring this under a clear light for those who are still exclusively think in the "time for money" method, or so-called time based consulting.
The example I delivered:
Client: pharma scale-up
Situation: value chain setup for country expansion with limited time-frame under strong competition
Complication: different advisors gave them contradicting input on the beneficial setup
Question: which value chain setup is the right one now?
What did I do?
I delivered the legally correct and beneficial value chain setup within a 30-minute meeting, me preparing for that meeting for appx. 1.5 hours in total (cross checking legal aspects, drawing up scenarios to ensure I haven't missed anything etc.), and another 30 minutes for emailing back & forth with them.
Me answering follow up questions after my main answer gave them further value (still within that 30-minute meeting):
- What are the pros/cons of the different scenarios (so they can reel it back to their global leadership credibly)?
- When would it be beneficial to evaluate other potential setups in the future and why?
What makes this work strategic?
💡 The value delivered, which was not just cost, but much more importantly, the right course of action for the business. If they had gone down the wrong path, they could have ended up with significant loss of profit and/or loss of the targeted market itself.
💡 They didn't have the relevant knowledge of what information is required to be able to choose between scenarios and they didn't know where to find the relevant and correct information to make that decision.
When I use my 20+ years expertise to save a client's reputation, market entry opportunity and costs starting from ~400 000 USD (best case scenario, the rest would have been much more costly for them) in a total of 2.5 hours, then it becomes clear that this expertise cannot be measured in time spent on the spot.
So, if I say a value-based advisory can deliver a minimum of 1:10 cost-value ratio, without even accounting for the long-term business impact that is invaluable, then it is still a gross under-estimation of the actual return on investment delivered in a very short period of time.
That's what clients get, by working with senior experts like me!